From the Archives: Uruk-hai Warrior

Last Orktober was an unusually productive month for me: I completed three (3!) projects! To be fair, in addition to finishing Ironskull’s Boyz, the two other projects were very small single figures.. Nonetheless, the first of them was an an ancient Uruk-hai Warrior.

The model is from the Two Towers Uruk-hai paint set, so from around Christmas 2002. The box came with 10 Uruk-hai, half armed with swords and the other with spears, and some sample paint pots. I originally painted three of the sword guys (see the end of the post), and then lost interest. The spear guys, and apparently one sword fighter were tossed in some move, but this one guy had sat unpainted in my collection for 15+ years.

As he was a type of an ork, and seemed like a quick win, I decided to get him painted up. Indeed, he took just two nights of painting, even with my slow pace. Being a single mini that I don’t have any intention of expanding into a bigger collection made it perfect for trying out new things. I wanted to achieve a dark metal armor, like in the movies, and Leadbelcher just wasn’t going to cut it. I mixed some black into it, and applied a black wash on top for good measure. Then it was just a matter of some quick highlights and I was done with the armor. The result was a dark, dull metal with worn edges, and the recipe would come in handy with an Ork Dreadnought later on.

I’m not as happy with the rest of the colors, but I guess they’re good enough. The skin could’ve been smoother and the cloth, straps and hair have more detail or contrast. But I noticed that as the LOTR/ME minis are smaller in scale, and true-scale to boot, there’s much less area to work on, and everything has to be really tiny! I do like the handprint though, it’s my favorite part of the model. The freehand was thankfully pretty easy to do as it was supposed to be rough, and I think I even got the scaling about right.

My original Uruks, for comparison.

This post was supposed to go up quite a bit earlier, but it turned out I was busier than expected during the weekend: my mates threw me a bachelor party! So rather than doing any hobby related stuff, I got to solve puzzles in an escape room, try to set highscores in old arcade cabinets, eat good food, drink a lot, sit in a sauna, play dice games, and best of all, catch up with my closest friends! And to my surprise, virtually no hangover on Sunday. What a brilliant weekend!

From the Archives: Ironskull’s Boyz

I’ve started working on Stormsire’s Cursebreakers, but as that will take some time still, let’s take a look at my final Underworlds warband that’s yet to be showcased: Ironskull’s Boyz.

Painting these guys took a lot longer than I originally anticipated. I completed the warband for last year’s Orktober, but originally started painting them in May. During the summer I moved, and as there wasn’t any real need to get the models finished, I also got distracted with other cool models. I know, I know, some painters take years or decades to finish miniatures, but four-ish months is still quite a lot of time.

This was a somewhat special project in that it was the first UW warband that I (slightly) converted. This was a simple headswap between Ironskull (the leader, with the cape), Bonekutta (big axe) and Basha (two clubs). Hakka’s (axe and knife) head was integrated in such a way that he got to keep it.. The reason for the headswap was basically that I wondered why the leader was called Ironskull, but the only head with a plate stuck to it didn’t belong to him!

To this day I think the Boyz are some of my best paintwork. The scheme, and the recipes for orange and green skin were borrowed from TaleofPainters’ Amy, big thanks to her for sharing. I especially like the faces, but painting the boss’ cape and the fur on his shoulder was really fun. These were also the first models that I tried painting checkers on, as well as sponge weathering. I wanted to use another kind of metal in addition to iron, so I added some accents of copper. I guess this makes Ironskull more of a Copper’ead, eh?

I’ll be revisiting Ironskull’s Boyz sometime in the future, as I was gifted an extra set of the models during the summer. Don’t know yet whether I’ll leave the models stock this time, or convert them even more, or about the color scheme. But Theophony on Dakka thought of painting the cape as a tattered Empire flag, so I’m fairly sure I have to steal the idea!

One final Underworlds related note. Yesterday while I was writing this post I noticed that Games Workshop had removed all Shadespire warbands from sale. I went and checked if Wayland or Element would still have the three gangs that I was missing on stock, but it turned out I was already too late. Luckily, the local game shop still had them in the shelf, and I promptly proceeded to buy Magore’s Fiends, Farstriders and Chosen Axes to complete my Shadespire collection. Didn’t really want to buy so much at once, but what can you do.. It looks like UW warbands will be on sale for two years before being retired, which means that I’ll have a year to get all the Nightvault expansions. Probably not going to get so committed to Beastgrave, as I have plenty to play (and paint!) with Shadespire and Nightvault already.